Paul Novoa
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Paul Novoa

El Paso, Texas, United States | SELF

El Paso, Texas, United States | SELF
Band Pop Hip Hop




"A New York Minute With Musician Paul Novoa"

Off hand, a fan of Rakim or Jay-Z might find themselves rather unfulfilled by recording artist Paul Novoa's single, "Light Up the Sky." But the strength of this song lies in its funky synth patterns, positive lyrics, and dance-able chorus.

With zero profanity, no fantasy street culture tales, and statements like "write your name in the stars, let them know who you are," you can easily tell Paul's message. It isn't just about the regular joe's promise to attain prominence; it's about inspiring others to shoot for the stars (no pun intended... well, maybe a little bit.) Paul desires to add some positivity back into Top 40 music. You know, something sandwiched in between the "inspiring" Lil Wayne and 2 Chainz songs that make you believe anything is achievable.

In a world where the muscle that is pop music grows stronger by the day, things like simply having fun on the track are becoming more of a necessity for artists. Fans want to see that the artists are having just as much fun making the record as they, the fans, are listening to it. Watching the video, its easy to tell Paul is indeed having a good time; no grown-up does that much of a cardio workout unless they're enjoying what they're doing.

Paul's ability to keep the song energized, to keep the fun going, and to keep it clean are three major reasons why this song can definitely become a big time winner, with the right promotion. Akin to a Flo Rida or Pitbull song, you can tell Paul's target audience is the 'after-hours' crowd: the people that just wanna get a little crazy after dark, possibly grab a drink, a group of friends, and "own the night."

Picture if you will, an episode of "Keeping Up With the Kardashians" where the ladies are out on the town or in a club dancing their cares away. In my mind, this song is definitely playing throughout the episode. The idea of being the "boss" of the night is definitely enticing to this "Rick Ross generation" in a major way. I don't know about anyone else, but if I find myself hosting one of those parties where the guys and girls are getting all "junior high school-y" and not dancing, I believe "Light Up the Sky" will serve as an awesome ice breaker.

Lastly, this was not a plug to watch "Keeping up with the Kardashians"- unless "Light Up the Sky" is playing in a scene. If so, watch that scene, enjoy the song, then for the love of God, PLEASE CHANGE THE CHANNEL. - New York Minute Magazine

"Music That Matters: Paul Novoa tries to bring mainstream into the Light"

Paul Novoa's personal brand and artistic philosophy, which he calls Street Light Mind, embraces positive, meaningful messages couched in a sound that combines Top 40 pop and hip-hop.

Unlike Chris Brown or Flo Rida, he avoids songs about idealistic love, blatant sexuality and profligate wealth in favor of lyrics that the average person can relate to. His new album, "Light Born," features the single "Light Up the Sky" and includes contributions from Grammy-winning engineers who have worked with Kanye West, Eminem, Usher and 50 Cent.

El Pasoan Novoa opened for Chamillionaire last year at Fiesta de las Flores, and his music has been featured on Las Cruces public television station KRWG (Channel 22) and LAT Studio's "Model Material." It will figure prominently in an episode of local actor-director Chris Jones' new El Paso-centric show, "Another Kind of Hero."
He took a break to talk about his music and the Street Light Mind philosophy.

Q What got you interested in making music?
A In college, I was heavily into writing, though not necessarily songs but about things that were going on in the world.
This was around the time of the 9/11 attacks, and I felt that the music on the airwaves wasn't really reflecting the attitudes of the nation. I wanted to hear inspiring content, and it seemed like most entertainers were really just keeping within the status quo. That's when I decided I wanted to make a change in the industry.
Generally, I feel that our country is going through some of its darkest times and the entertainment industry is a reflection of that. There's a lot of talent out there, but I think a lot of them (are) releasing projects that are out of touch with what people are going through in life.
Currently, there are a lot of dance songs in the market that are catchy and well-produced. Those are things that I enjoy listening to and things I sometimes create, but at the end of the day there needs to be a little bit better balance. That's where the Street Light Mind philosophy comes into play.

Q Explain the Street Light Mind Philosophy. What does that represent to you?
A The Street Light Mind philosophy is something that can be hard to understand in a world where most people make the song, perform it and promote it, but the purpose of this ideology is to create and bring inspiring content into mainstream media.
My focus right now is on making mainstream, likable music, and it's truly exemplified through my recent album release, "Light Born," along with my single, "Light Up the Sky."
You don't expect to hear the most positive stuff on the radio, but generations before us have had acts (such as) Stevie Wonder, U2 and Bruce Springsteen. These people were able to create commercially successful, inspiring content without sacrificing their musical identities.
We can't just create songs that make people forget about society's problems, because at the end of the day, when they go back home from the concert or the club, life's struggles are still waiting there. Entertainers have a great platform, and we should be using that platform of entertainment to help inspire people through their problems and not just make them forget.

Q Is there anything personally in your life that personally motivates you?
A This past decade has been difficult for my family and me. Some of my relatives had gotten gravely ill, and the downturn in the economy has been particularly hard on small businesses.
I'll give you a perfect example: I was driving home one day after visiting my grandfather at the hospital, and it was one of the tougher days. At that point, he had been in the ICU for a while, and things weren't looking good. I was searching for something to listen to on the radio, and nothing that was being played was even remotely inspiring.
People are in search of moments that can help them, inspire them to get through the night. That's why I make music. There are performers that make music because they're naturally creative people, then there's others that make music for the wrong reasons: fame, money, girls, etc. Those are not my reasons. I do all of this so that maybe one day someone will be driving home from the hospital and my song is on the radio and I inspired that person and changed their day.

Q Tell me about "Light Up the Sky."
A It can best be described as an upbeat Top 40 hip-hop hybrid. Although the lyrics aren't political in nature, you could see it as an anthem for the 99 percent.
When people ask me what my music sounds like, I explain that it's like a mix between the catchiness of a Pitbull hit, melded with the lyricism of someone like Lupe Fiasco. This song is a perfect example of that amalgamation.

Q Where did you record? Tell me about the producers you employed for this album.
A There really was an interesting juxtaposition in the recording process for me. I produce all my own melodies with a simple bedroom setup, and I recorded the voice segments in various home studios here in El Paso and in Phoenix.
People expect high-quality audio, so after I recorded my parts, it was vital for me to acquire the best mixing and mastering engineers possible. It took me a while and a lot of coaxing, but I managed to successfully convince some really amazing sound engineers to join my project.
Ken Lewis and Brent Kolatalo have worked with big recording artists, such as 50 Cent, Kanye, Usher and Eminem. My mastering engineer was Tony Dawsey, who mastered all of Jay-Z's albums, and he took the sound, direction and vision that I had in my mind and brought it to life. - El Paso Times (A Gannett Newspaper)


Light Up the Sky (single)- 2012
Light Born LP - 2011
Strut (Single) - 2010



Paul Novoa is a recording artist, producer, and writer from the border city of El Paso, Texas. With a determination to reshape mainstream/ Top 40 music, the former UCLA economics major combines edgy instrumentals with inspiring lyrics to create a powerful listening experience.

The El Paso Times, a Gannett newspaper, recently featured Novoa with a headline that perfectly summarizes his entertainment philosophy: "Music That Matters." Paul's music has also been featured several times on television, including a 30 minute spotlight on an NPR affiliate (KRWG), regional reality shows ("Model Material"), and even through a featured acting role in an indie television drama ("Another Kind of Hero").

Paul Novoa’s Light Born is a Top 40/ hip hop hybrid that makes a bold statement which separates it from the generic sound of mainstream radio. While other artists are willing to concede to current trends, topics, and gimmicks, Paul wrote and self-produced an album that aims to make an impact in the lives of every day people in search of a brighter future. This mentality serves as the backbone of Novoa’s entertainment brand, “Street Light Mind," which creates content to inspire mainstream culture.

Although a self release, Paul made sure that LIGHT BORN would be a first class LP, securing the services of Grammy award winning engineers Ken Lewis (Kanye West, Usher) and Tony Dawsey (Jay-Z) to mix and master the project. Novoa then partnered with talented photographers and designers throughout Texas (including Austin, Texas' award winning Chad Harlan) to create eye catching promotional materials.

The songs of LIGHT BORN come alive during Paul's live performances. Having already opened for Chamillionaire (Fiesta de las Flores 2011) and performed on a US military base, people have been energized by Novoa's non-stop programmed set, which strategically avoids the awkward, momentum-killing downtime of many live shows.

Indeed, Paul Novoa strives to use his entertainment platform as a light in the dark times that America, and the entire world for that matter, currently faces.